Dangers Of Not Flossing Your Teeth

Tucson dentalFlossing is extremely important to your oral hygiene routine. Flossing is a way to remove plaque and food particles in places where a normal toothbrush cannot reach.  Normally this is under the gum line and between your teeth. For your dental health, it comes second only to brushing your teeth. Daily flossing complements tooth brushing.

While talking about oral health, one often comes across terms like plaque, tartar or calculus. Plaque is a thin removable layer of bacteria and sugars formed on teeth and gums. Plaque formation is a natural process as these bacteria are always present in our mouth.  Plaque formation automatically re-starts every 4-12 hours after brushing the teeth. Therefore brushing your teeth twice each day is very important for dental health.

As tooth brushing removes the plaque from the exposed easily approachable areas in mouth, flossing removes plaque layer from the hidden parts of the mouth like the gum line between the teeth. The acids from plaque can harm the enamel of the teeth and constant exposure can form cavities in teeth. If  plaque is not removed it starts to become hard transforming into tartar or calculus layer  after 48 hours This can lead to gingivitis or periodontitis.

One can floss teeth by taking a piece of floss about 18 inches long into your hand. Wind most of the floss around the middle finger of both hands and leave an inch or two of floss to work with. Now hold this floss tightly between your thumbs and index fingers and slide it gently up-and-down between your teeth. When you reach the base of the tooth with the floss make a C curve with the floss passing through your teeth in order to get rid of the entrapped food on your gum. You have to be very gentle when you touch the gums as this soft tissue is very soft and delicate and can easily bruise the gum tissue.

Your overall health depends on good oral hygiene.  Don’t get scolded by your dentist during your next dental check-up.  Brush and floss your teeth twice each day.

Has it been longer than 6 months since your last check-up?  Then isn’t it time to set an appointment with Dr. Riley…..call today 520-297-9069.

Are You Endangering Your Health With Silver Fillings?

tucson dentistAmalgam, the common silver substance used to fill cavities, has been used in dentistry for more than 100 years.  It is a combination of metals like silver, mercury, tin and copper and has traces of zinc, indium or palladium.  Generally amalgams contain 50% mercury 35% silver and 9% tin and 6% of copper and traces of zinc and other metals.  As alternatives there can be amalgams made with larger percentages of other metals like copper or indium which can bind mercury strongly and can decrease its release from this mixture.

Mercury is used in amalgam because it helps make the material more pliable.  It creates a compound that is soft enough to pack into the teeth but quickly hardens to withstand the actions of biting and chewing.

Being cheaper compared to other fillings and due to its capability to with stand pressure caused due to chewing it has long been the preferred choice of material to use as dental fillings. Millions of people currently have amalgam fillings and some dentists are still using it today. However he harmful effects that mercury has on human health has been well documented for centuries.

The fact that mercury can have a accumulative harmful effect on human health has to be taken into consideration carefully. According to one source, mercury can attach through the sulfhydral groups on amino acids in your CNS (Central nervous system) unless actively removed for as long as 15-30 years. In other words, the longer you are exposed to the mercury the greater your risk of creating toxicity in your body.

We are exposed every day to mercury through various sources like water, air, occupation but using amalgam filling exposes you to mercury every day on a consistent basis.  Although the risk of exposure to mercury through use of amalgam fillings is a controversial issue but it cannot be ignored that chewing, brushing and intake of hot foods can stimulate the release of mercury therefore exposing oneself to its possible toxicity.

Supporters of amalgam fillings claim that the amount of mercury released from amalgam fillings is negligable.  However  animal studies have conclusively shown labelled mercury traces appearing in kidneys, brain and intestinal walls.  These mercury traces occurred from the amalgam. Some European countries have banned the use of amalgams as dental fillings.

Additionally there are reports showing a link between amalgam fillings with autoimmune disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis and thyroid problems along with other problems such as food allergies, kidney dysfunction, infertility, polycystic ovary syndrome and neurotransmitter imbalances causing tremors, insomnia, polyneuropath and paresthesias.

Why risk your health with mercury fillings?  Today you have a choice with composite fillings.  Composite is usually make of a quartz resin and most often has a light sensitive agent in it.

Composite fillings actually bond to the tooth thus helping the tooth be restored its original strength.  Mercury fillings actually weaken the teeth making them more susceptible to breaking.  Composite fillings restore the natural appearance of your teeth thus making it more aesthetically pleasing.  And composite fillings are less sensitive to hot and cold that teeth filled with mercury.

The choice is simple.  For health and cosmetic reasons have your teeth restored with mercury-free fillings.  Arizona Dental Medicine is a mercury-free practice!  Call Dr. Riley today and let her help you get on the path of improved health.  520-297-9069

What Happens If You Don’t Have Regular Dental Checkups

Regular visits to the dentists are not only important for a beautiful bright smile.   They are also extremely important to maintainbest tucson dentist your overall general health. People often ignore their oral health and hygiene but it is important to note that oral infections can be fatal if left untreated.

There are three things that are vital to dental and oral health: proper tooth brushing, regular flossing and regular dental checkups.

Off course, the regular daily cleaning of your teeth reduce the chances of getting oral diseases but this fact should not overshadow the importance of regular routine dental checkups. You may ask why? In answer to this question, two reasons can be mentioned.  The first is that regardless of maintaining good oral hygiene habits, there are factors like genetic disposition and daily habits like eating, drinking and smoking which may make one self more prone toward getting an oral disease.

Secondly, because of the mild and common symptoms marked by most of the oral
, there is a high probability that the disorder can remain inconspicuous and undetectable for a long time. Signs like pain, bleeding, swollen gums, weak teeth, gum recession or appearance of incurable sores in your mouth are the signs of advanced oral diseases. Everyone will agree to this fact that early diagnosis and treatment of any disease would lead to better outcomes of the treatment.

Untreated gum disease can lead to some very serious problems such as heart disease, respiratory, kidney diseases, infections and loss of teeth and loss of bone mass. A dentist can: give suggestions on how to improve your daily care for your teeth, detect any suspected mass in your mouth which can be a sign of oral cancer, can help prevent
complications involved with inflammation and infections resulting from the gum diseases by removing plaque or tartar by scaling when needed.

Have you had a dental checkup within the last 6 months?  Within the last year?  Or has it been several years?  Don’t put your oral and overall health in jeopardy.  Call Dr. Riley today and schedule your dental checkup today – (520) 297-9069

Health Conditions Your Dentist May Be The First To Detect

You may never have thought of this but often times your dentist is the cornerstone of your overall health and well-being.tucson dentist

It is common for many of us to think that our oral health is not related to our overall health.  But upon closer examination, your comprehensive health is directly related to the health of your teeth and gums.

Your mouth is a direct entrance to the rest of your body.  Teeth and gums are directly linked to your digestion and bloodstream as well as your nervous, endocrine, lymphatic and skeletal systems.

The harmful organisms, bacteria, that breed in your mouth are easily shared with your entire body.  It is estimated that about 90% of systemic diseases in your body are directly related to conditions in your mouth.  This is why your dentist can often times be your first line of defense in detecting and preventing diseases.

At Arizona Dental Medicine we are trained at diagnosing and treating conditions of your teeth, gums and upper jaw and face.  These are conditions that can impact your overall health.

There are several diseases that your dentist may be the first to detect and diagnose.  Here are 7 of them.

1. Red, sore, swollen and bleeding gums are signs of periodontitis or gum disease.  Periodontitis is proven to be associated with increased risk of heart disease and stroke.

2. Sore, pale gums are an indicator that you have anemia.  Anemia affects about 3.5 million people in the united states.  Left untreated anemia can lead to severe fatigue, heart problems, nerve damage, impaired mental function and even death.

3. Bright red, spongy, inflamed gums that bleed easily is often times a signal of leukemia.

4. Tooth erosion and a breakdown of enamel is an indicator that you may be suffering from eating disorders, such as anorexia or bulimia.

5. Air blowing on your gums and making them bleed can be an indication of pregnancy.

6. Bad breath, chronic dry mouth, receding gums and gums that bleed easily are often associated with diabetes.

7. White spots and sores that are slow to heal on your gums and other oral tissues in the mouth can be early signs of oral cancer.

Don’t take chances with your health.  If it’s been longer than 6 months, call us today to schedule an appointment.  Early detection of health issues goes a long ways towards reversing them completely. 520-297-9069

Dr. Rochelle Riley’s

Tucson Dental – How to Brush Your Teeth

The first step in excellent oral care is to choose a good toothbrush. You always want to use a soft brush with a small head. A soft brush effectively removes plaque but doesn’t damage your teeth or gum.

Tucson DentalThe next step is to choose a good toothpaste. In general any toothpaste that contains Fluoride will do the job, unless you have any special requirements as determined by your dentist. Two of the best brands of toothpastes are Colgate Total and Crest Multicare.

The first rule of brushing is to start from a specific location and work your way to the opposite side and all the way through the whole mouth so that you end where you started. This way you won’t miss any areas. Also usually a pea Tucson Dentistsize of tooth paste is enough. A good, thorough brushing should at lease take 2 minutes and ideally lasts around 4 minutes.

There are many different techniques for brushing your teeth but one of the most popular ones is described here:

Hold the brush with a 45 degree angle toward the teeth and the gum. Gently press against the gum so the tips of the bristles go in between the gum and the teeth. Then apply lateral vibration for a few times and roll down the brushto sweep the plaque away from the teeth and the gum. Repeat this motion 6 to 10 times and move on to the next area of 2 to 3 teeth. If your mouth is full of foam, spit out and continue brushing. Your brushing is completed when you have brushed all the surfaces of your teeth and not when your mouth is full!

Tucson DentistsOn chewing surfaces, short strokes will work best to get the plaque out of the grooves and pits. Also when brushing the front teeth from inside, hold your brush vertically to be able to reach the teeth better.

As far as frequency of brushing is concerned, ideally you want to brush your teeth after each meal. But if you can t, brush at least twice a day after breakfast and before going to bed.

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